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U.S. Senate

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America 29, Mr. Reid 21, Us 20, Mr. Whitehouse 9, Mr. Baucus 8, United States 8, Graham 7, Colorado 7, Mccain 7, Leon 6, Montana 6, Washington 5, New Hampshire 5, Rubio 4, Baucus 4, Mr. Graham 4, Sergio 3, The Senate 3, Chandler 3, Mr. Bennet 3,
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  CSPAN    U.S. Senate    News/Business.  

    June 27, 2013
    5:00 - 8:01pm EDT  

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but for this bill, she missed bed times due to late-night meetings or conference calls. how many times on a saturday did i talk to her when she was at some athletic event for one of her kids, and you could hear the cheering and the running up and down in the background? but stephanie has a unique ability to help build coalitions. when one group or another was upset -- and believe me, that probably happened every five minutes in this legislation -- there was stephanie, soothing them, calming them but telling them the truth so they trusted her. an indispensable part of our ability to get this done. through the rough patches, she never gave up on our team, and i know that kyle and nora and pip are going to be happy to have mommy back and maybe there will be another ice hockey tournament in rochester next year whenever legislation we're working on
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then rises to the fore. to the great genius -- and i started referring to him in my meetings as the immigration genius, and he was. the intellectual force, the creative force who propelled this effort was one leon fresco, the son of cuban immigrants from miami. i think it was about five years ago, he took this job. he was a very successful immigration lawyer, but he took this job because he wanted to do immigration reform. he's worked on many other things. his creativity has shown its mark in assumeland on so many different issues, but this was his dream. he put every atom of his body into this. like me, he is voluble. during our staff meetings, we would yell at each other, and it became a joke. because i once said shut up, leon, so john mccain greeted him at each meeting shut up, leon, and we all loved it.
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but leon, your fierce determination, your innate intelligence, your deep love of this country, great, and to mama fresco, leon's mom who is so proud of her son, and it was great to meet your parents, who are immigrants, who are the american dream, the people i spoke about on the floor a few minutes ago, were embodied in the frescos. and how about to sophie. leon's wife got pregnant during all this, so he wasn't devoting 100% of his time to immigration reform but close to it. and there she was sophie, indomitable and quiet, doing the job. our legislative team is a great team, and everyone pitched in to do immigration. led by heather mchugh. heather's advice is invaluable.
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she communicated with each one of our colleagues. each one of our staff has great attributes. and heather is always wary of me going a little too far or a little too fast or a little too quick, and she will come into the office and say, you know, you better think about this. i know i have got trouble. but again, incredible. and because we have immigration so multifaceted, all our staff contributed. megan who i consider the best on the hill. she helped create the a.c.a. but of course there were many benefit issues that occurred, and there was megan solving them. anna taylor, the only person on our staff with a deep southern arkansas accent, came from blanche lincoln's staff. there were tax issues. there she was solving them all. john jones was incredible. he stepped up and handled many of the issues. dan rudolphski, veronica rudan,
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they drafted summaries and talking points and spread sheets. and you know, when things got tough, bekka kelly and erin vaughan, each the mother of children less than 1, let nothing get in the way of them doing this while at the same time maintaining focus on their kids and the bill. it might surprise you to know, mr. president, i have a very good press team, and brian fallon, matt house, max young, meredith kelly, marissa kaufman, josh malovski, they learned the substance of immigration and spun it into a beautiful, beautiful web that the public could understand. our dpcc team led by ryan mcgonahey, kept policy and press teams singing off the same praise sheet, keeping our caucus up to date. and then of course as every one of us, we have great administrative staffers. alex victor who came to the
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office as a young kid from long island, as a young helper in the long island office is now my unflappable executive assistant, no matter how tough and tense things get in our office, and they do, she is just steady as a rock, getting things done. she and her colleagues, megan runyan, alice james, rob kelly, ellen cahill, claire russell, all kept us administratively going. i mentioned the members, they're great. there is so much to say about each of them. chairman leahy, i want to thank you. you're probably on your way back to your beautiful farm in vermont, but for shepherding this bill through the judiciary committee and everyone's open and inclusive process well known. i want to thank bruce cohen, who this is the capstone of his career. we all know how important he is to the judiciary committee. and his big shoes were ably and
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elegantly filled by christine lucias as chief counsel. but j.p.dowd, john amaya, chris leopold, anna mcmurray all did a great job. as most people know here, harry reid is one of my best friends in the world, and his unwavering support and confidence that we could get this done was essential. and he has a great staff to lent constant help to us -- kate leon, bruce king, they all did a great job. and the staffs of the other members. i want to mention just a few of them. i hope they are listening. kerry talbott, senator menendez' staff, joe zabi, menda silver, jonathan davidson, sergio
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gonzalez who worked for senator bennet. so many staffers, as i said, we got to know each other real well through all the meetings. we had a lot of disagreements and tough arguments. we all stuck together. and senator feinstein's team. senator feinstein put that section together. amazingly the growers and the farm workers, they are for this bill. that goes to senator feinstein's great leadership. and chris thompson, neil quintar and kim aldrin did a great job there. we worked as closely in this endeavor with the republican staffs as the democratic staffs, and i owe them a great deal of thanks. sally canfield, enrique gonzalez, let me pay him a compliment. he was sort of the equivalent -- not quite, in my opinion, but close to the equivalent of leon fresco on the republican side. john base celici, senator rubio's staff, senator mccain, matt rimcunis, david glackman
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with senator graham. when we had our meetings, all these staffers were there. chandler moss, first he had given senator flake some tough advice. just as mccain would talk about leon, i would talk about chandler, i now owe him a dinner. i said chandler, i'm taking you out to dinner if this bill passes the senate. so pick your restaurant, don't make it too expensive. elizabeth taylor of senator flake's staff. and then the great floor staff, gary myrick and tim and trish and meredith, dan, brad, stephanie, they run the place like clockwork. as recently as today when there were more requests than time and people had to go home at 4:00. emma fulkerson of senator murray's staff, senator durbin's staff who did a great job whipping, and dave shiappa and
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the republican floor staff as well. we got a lot of help from senate finance and budget committees, and i thank them. and i want to thank the rest of my staff in new york and d.c. they are the wind beneath our wings. if we didn't feel good and safe in new york, we couldn't take the risks we do here in washington, and they make that possible. so i thank them all. finally -- and leon always making sure everything goes exactly right -- the leg counsel staff, miss easley and the others, they worked 24/7 to turn these ideas into the 1,000-page bill as has been remarked over and over again. they needed that many pages because it was so complicated, but they did a great job as well. once again to my staff, from mike lynch all the way through, i think, as every member probably thinks i have the best staff on the hill.
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it's the best staff i have had in 39 years as a legislator, and without you, we couldn't do it. so tonight, we're going to celebrate the going away and the ascension of one of our old-time staffers, and we'll all have a great time together, but i am blessed. i'm blessed to have a family, my wife and daughters, who put up with me through thick and thin, and i'm blessed to have two other families, my senate colleagues, who i do regard as my family, and my staff, who i also regard as my family. so although i'm not irish, i have got a big, big, big family, and they're the greatest, all three. with that, mr. president, i yield the floor and i thank sheldon for again his graciousness. mr. whitehouse: i believe that under the pending order, i have the floor, but i would like to yield to the senator from illinois for two minutes and then be recognized at the conclusion of his remarks. the presiding officer: without objection.
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mr. durbin: i thank the senator from rhode island, and i thank the presiding officer. i just wanted to join my colleague, senator schumer, first thanking him for his leadership in bringing us together. with senator mccain, they led the effort, the eight-senator effort to put together this comprehensive immigration bill which was enacted by the senate today by a vote of 68-32. many thanks go around. i have acknowledged the other senators who were a part of that gang, but i wanted to give special recognition to three of my staffers who really worked overtime and did an extraordinary effort to put this bill together. first and foremost, joe zogby, my late counsel in the senate judiciary committee. he was there at creation when it came to the dream act, and he has been with me ever since. some 12 years of dedicated effort to pass this legislation on the floor of the senate. we did it today. it never would have happened if joe hadn't devoted so much energy and talent in to making this day possible. i also will tell you his name is well known among those who are
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dreamers. so many times, he has saved them from deportation when they were just minutes or days away from that happening. he has a heart of gold and a great mind, and i'm lucky to have him. mara silver, an extraordinary lawyer who took on aspects of this bill that were tough. refugee and asylee sections that have virtually no constituency. there are sections of the law that really affect some of the most downtrodden people on earth who face oppression in other countries. she came to it with the heart of a lion and came through with some provisions that will really give many of these asylees and refugees their chance to prove that they need help and deserve help here in the united states. and vicule odande who has been another staffer who sat through meeting after weary meeting, putting together the provisions that we needed to work out.
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you can't say enough for the staff people when you do this type of olympic and heroic effort, as under this comprehensive immigration reform. i'm fortunate to have an compensational staff, both in the district -- state, i should say, and back here in washington. those three deserve special recognition today for the extraordinary job they did. mr. president, i yield the floor and to the senator from rhode island with gratitude. mr. whitehouse: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from rhode island. mr. whitehouse: thank you, mr. president. it has been an extraordinary day in the senate today, and it shows the kind of progress that can be made even on bedeviling issues when persistence and optimism are brought to bear, and i hope that my continued efforts on climate change will ultimately produce with the same persistence and optimism the same success we've seen today on
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immigration. this is the 37th time that i will have come to the floor to urge my colleagues to wake up to the threats that we face from climate change, to wake up to stop hiding behind the distortions that are spread by the fossil fuel interests, and to start heeding the warnings of scientists, of economists, of insurers, of businesses, of national security officials, of religious leaders. they all say something needs to be done, and fast to stave off the harm of carbon pollution. for the first time in this speech, i can say that something at last is being done. this tuesday, president obama laid out a national plan to reduce carbon pollution and to prepare our country for the
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effects of climate change. his plan is a bold one, and it is going to challenge the status quo. most important, the administration will regulate greenhouse gas emissions from new and existing power plants. if we're going to be serious, we need to strike at the heart of the problem, and regulating these big power plants is the best first step. and, let's face it ... until now, these big polluters were getting a free ride. they were harming all of us with their emissions and paying no price for it. carbon-driven climate change hurts our economy, damages our infrastructure, harms our public health. economists call this price that we all pay the social cost of carbon, because it represents the cost that polluting corporations offload onto the
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rest of us, onto the rest of society. earlier this mornghts the obama administration revised its estimate of the social cost of carbon to $36 per ton of carbon dioxide emitted. this new estimate better captures the true harm of carbon pollution to our oceans, to our farmland, to ourselves, and i commend the president for strengthening our economic assessment of climate change. the administration's measure still falls short of some experts' calculations, however, such as the comprehensive review that prompted far-reaching climate change legislation in the united kingdom. i think our estimate should be still higher to accurately reflect the cost of climate change, and i think the best way to address the mounting social cost of carbon is a carbon fee. if we start charging these corporations a fee based on the
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social cost of their carbon pollution, that will factor those costs into their price, into their business models, and that is economics 101. a carbon fee, in other words, makes the market work properly by putting the costs of carbon pollution into the price of the product instead of letting the big polluters freeload on the general public. it's a simple choice. do we want the american people, children and seniors, small business owners and homeowners to pay the price of carbon pollution or do we want to have the corporations behind that pollution take responsibility for the harm, to balance the energy markets, and to encourage american clean energy technologies? we're already hearing the familiar refrains of the deniers, the skeptics, and the big polluters trying to scare us
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into protecting the status quo. a carbon free -- quote -- "cellulose down our ability to compete -- slows down our ability to compete," claims one of my republican colleagues. the cost of nearly everything built in america would go up, declared another. the speaker of the house warned that if we put a price on carbon, "the united states economy would suffer, millions of family-wage jobs would be lost, and american consumers would incur dramatically higher prices for energy and consumer goods, all without any significant environmental benefit whatsoever." these are scary predictions, but are they true? actually, the world wildlife fund and the carbon disclosure project found that investments to reduce carbon pollution yield greater financial returns for companies than do their overall capital investments. so never mind the huge environmental benefits. cutting back on greenhouse gas emissions by just 3% each year would save u.s. businesses up to
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$190 billion a year by 2020, or $780 billion over ten years. and that supports american leadership in new, clean energy technologies, powering our economy. so it should overall be good for business. and what about american families? the nonpartisan congressional budget office estimates that a carbon fee starting at around $28 per ton of carbon dioxide emitted, which is within the price range recommended by economists, would result in a 2.5% increase in costs for the lowest-income households and a .7% increase for the richest ones. it's higher for low-income families because they're likely to spend more of their budget on home heating, on gas, and on other energy. what the carbon fee fearmongers
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overlook is the substantial revenue generated by a carbon fee. according to c.b.o., a fee starting at $20 per ton would raise $1.2 trillion over the first ten years. that revenue doesn't just disappear. when senator shats, congressman waxman, senator blumeening that will and i put forward a carbon fee earlier this year, we left the use of the fee especially open for discussion. we want to work with others, particularly those on the finance committee, to find a use to puts that revenue to work for the american people an propels the economy. every penny of that carbon fee revenue could go back to the american people. there are a lot of ways to do this. so let's consider a few examples. we should start by setting aside about $140 billion or 12% of the total to help lower-income
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households pay for their 2.5% cost increase. that would leave us with more than $1 trillion to send back to people in other ways. that's a lot of money, even by washington standards, and it can do big things. mr. graham: would the senator -- i hate to interrupt. would you be willing to yield for two minutes so i could thank some people on immigration, and i promise i will take no more thank two minutes. mr. whitehouse: let hey respond to the distinguished senator. the answer is yes. i also see our distinguished chairman of the finance committee and his rank member on the floor, and i understand that they have a colloquy that he'd like to engage in -- that they'd like to engage in. do they have an estimate as to how long they would like to engage in that colloquy? mr. baucus: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from montana. mr. baucus: mr. president, might i ask the senator from rhode island how much time he wishes -- how much time he has
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remaining? mr. whitehouse: i have about another ten minutes of speaking. what i propose to do is yield to the senator, senator graham, for such time as he may need -- mr. graham: two minutes. mr. baucus: mr. president, i am fine. i think we should wait -- let the senator from rhode island proceed with his statement, if the senator from south carolina wants to go ahead. whatever you two work out. mr. graham: great. mr. whitehouse: i'll yield the floor to senator graham. mr. graham: to all my senate colleagues, today was a good day, an historic day for the senate. thank you all, whether you opposed or supported the bill. it was a great debate. to the staff, this bill could have died aa thousand times. you wouldn't let it. to ma. -- to matt, you're great. sergio, mark in mccain's office, thank you for working for senator mccain.
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your reward will be in heaven. chandler, yo awesome working for jeff, enrique, one of the smartest people i ever met, marco was a game changer, stef noaa knee you kept leo. thank you for being a strong voice. you always reminded us that we're dealing with people and to sergio and in michael bennet's office, you all were really incredible calming for us. to senator hatch you came into the debate at a time when we needed a lift. orrin harchtion i want to thank you for jumping into the debate, adding to the momentum that was created by the so-called gang of eight. you provided momentum in committee. it meant a lot. to kelly ayotte, you jumped on board at a time when people were talking about what was bad with the bill. you came out to give us number
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five after -- along with senator hatch, to give it momentum. that was an act of i think tremendous political courage and you did the country a service by standing up and standing out at a time when it was tough. to h.o.v.ening and corker, you put us over the to. i've never enjoyed working with two people more. but to bob corker and john hoeven, your efforts to come up with a new amendment along with senator hatch and senator ayotte really made the difference. so i just want the to recognize these people that they came along at a time when america needed them and this bill is the result of hard work of many people at the staff level but key senators who were not in the original bipartisan group came to the aid. i will yield. thank you very much for allowing tow say these words. mr. hatch: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from utah. mr. hatch: i want to thank my colleague from south carolina for his kind remarks. he is right on a the love these folks who came to the forefront
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on this bill. thank you. the presiding officer: the senator from rhode island. mr. whitehouse: let me also congratulate the -- our friend senator graham for his extraordinarily leadership on this. let me ask unanimous consent that i be able to speak for another five or six minutes before i conclude my remarks and let me also ask unanimous consent that the interruption that we just sustained be removed to the end of my mark remarks. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. whitehouse: we were talking about ways to bring carbon fee revenue back to the american people. we should start by setting aside about $140 billion, which is about 12% of the total, to help those lower-income households pay for that 2.5% increase that they will sustain. that would leave us with more than $1 trillion to send back to the american people in other ways. that is a lot of money, even by washington standards, and it can do big things.
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for starters, $1 trillion every ten years would go a long way toward reducing the national debt. listening to some of the apocalyptic language used by republicans about our national debt, you'd think that they might be interested in this. what are some of the other ways we could return those carbon revenues? well, you could send out checks directly to the american people for about $900 per household or $360 per citizen every year. i know there are plenty of families in rhode island that could use an extra $900 a year, and these dividends would go right back into the economy because those families would spend it quickly. or we could give seniors a rai raise.
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according to the census bureau, as many as one in seven americans over 65 lives in poverty. in 2010 and 2011, seniors saw no social security cost-of-living adjustments even though their costs for food and medicine an heating oil continue to rise. with the revenues from a carbon fee, we could raise the average benefit by $1,600 a year. or $130 a month. last year that would have been an 11% raise for every senior. imagine that. and seniors living on fixed incomes tend to spend every dollar they get. so this money, too, would come right back into the economy. what about students? the outstanding government-backed student loan debt in the country rose to a record $958 billion last year.
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with $1 trillion in carbon fee revenues, we could forgive all the federal student loan debt that american families are now carrying. boom, done, gone. or we could cut every students' and graduates' debt in half saving americans t $45 billion a year in loan payments next year alone and double the maximum pell grant from $5,500 to a little over $11,000 and still have money left over to permanently set the rate on subsidized government loans for undergraduates at 3.4%. that is the rate currently set to double next month if congress doesn't act. or we could use the $1 trillion to lower the top corporate tax rate from 35% to 28%.
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that reduction was mitt romney's corporate tax goal, and we could do it without adding a dime to the deficit. that's why republicans like george schultz, art laffer, one of the architects of president reagan's economic plan, have expressed support for a revenue-neutral carbon feevment i have highlighted these four proposals to show that we could do big things with a carbon fee. these proposals -- or some combination of them or other ideas -- are all possibilities opened up by carbon fee legislation. shouldn't we have that discussion? wouldn't that be better and more honest and more productive than trotting out the tired tall tales of climate denial, better than pretending that it's a hoax? president obama has defined the growing menace of climate change as the global threat of our
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time. it is. it is this challenge by which our generation will be judged. the grown-ups know it. nasa and noaa and all the major american scientific organizations, the join joint cs of staff and our military leaders, a who's who of america's top corporate leadership, the property casualty and insurance industry, the conference of catholic bishops, the list goes on. mr. president, it is time for us to wake up and meet our solemn responsibility to our country and to its leadership role in the world. and we can do so in a way that allows us to do big things that will help the american people. as the president said, that is our job, that is our task, we have to get to work. i thank the distinguished chairman of the finance committee and his ranking member for their courtesy.
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i yield the floor. i had remarks prepared to deliver on a bill that senator baucus and i worked on together, the safe act, which will help from the beaches of rhode island to the mountain glaciers of montana, and i would ask unanimous consent that those remarks be put into the record rather than keep him waiting any longer. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. whitehouse: i yield the floor. mr. baucus: first, i thank my colleague from rhode island for all his work in many areas, a great senator, great statesman actually, a great representative of the people of the state of rhode island, and also for his works on the resource legislation that he mentioned. i think at this point, i want to add my thanks to all the -- those who worked on the recently passed immigration bill. senator graham made a point of thanking senators. i want to also thank all the
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so-called gang of eight, senator schumer, senator menendez, senator rubio, senator bennet, senator durbin, senator graham, senator flake, senator mccain for their great work. they worked very hard to get that bill together. and, of course, senator corker and senator hoeven, who came up with a key amendment to put the bill over the finish line. and hat's off to the chairman of the judiciary committee, senator leahy, and, of course, our leader, senator reid, who helped martial all those efforts. i think they've done a -- they did a great job. there's no end to the commendation that they should receive. mr. president, on a totally nother matter, the philosopher bertrard russell said -- and i quote him -- "the greatest challenge to any thinker is stating their problem in a way that will allow a solution." i come to the floor today with
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my good friend, senator orrin hatch, to state our concerns about a national problem that's holding back our economy. we're here to call on our colleagues to provide ideas that will allow a solution. first, the problem. mr. president, america's tax code is complex, it's inefficient and acting as a brake on our economy. senator hatch and i believe it is, indeed, a serious -- it is in need of a serious overhaul. it has been close to three decades since the last major revisions to the tax code. in that time, congress has made about 15,000 changes to the tax code. 15,000 over three decades. the code now contains nearly 4 million words. here it is right here. the tax code. this is america's tax code -- all 24 pounds of it. paperback. just think how heavy it would be if it were hardcover. it would take more than 18 days
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nonstop to read the tax code. in fact, it takes the average taxpayer 13 hours to gather and compile the receipts and forms to comply with the code, and it costs americans $160 billion a year just to comply with the code, let alone the taxes americans pay. this complexity in the code is eroding confidence in our economy and creating uncertainty for america's families and businesses. clearly the tax code is broken. that's the problem. and it's a serious one. the solution calls for a more simple, more fair tax code, one that will allow growth -- the economy to grow and to create jobs. for the past three years, senator hatch and i have been working closely with all the members of the senate finance committee to reach that goal through comprehensive tax refo reform. we've held more than 30 hearin hearings. we've heard from hundreds of experts how the tax reform can
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simplify the system for families, helps businesses innovate and make the u.s. more competitive. mr. hatch: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from utah. mr. hatch: i want to thank my friend from montana for all the hard work that he has done with regard to the senate finance committee and, of course, this tax set of problems that we have in this country. he's been truly dedicated to reforming our nation's tax code and truly dedicated to doing it in a bipartisan manner. which is something i very much appreciate. our work together is starting to pay off. tax reform is building momentum. over the past three months, we have issued ten bipartisan option papers that -- options papers, i should say, that detailed reform proposals in every area of the tax code. the full committee has met on a weekly basis to discuss these options. we've made tremendous progress and we are now entering the homestretch, all of this under the leadership of senator baucus. senator baucus and i are here
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today to call on all of our colleagues, all of our colleagues in the senate to now provide their input to help us get tax reform over the finish line. we have a historic opportunity to do tax reform this congress, to make the code simpler and fairer for the people we serve. we are determined to make it happen but we need every member's participation. in order to make sure that we end up with a simpler, more efficient, and fairer tax code, we believe it is important to start with a blank slate. a tax code without all of the special provisions in the form of exclusions, deductions and credits and other tax -- or preferences that some refer to as tax expenditures. mr. baucus: mr. president, i might say this blank slate is want, of course, the end of the -- is not, of course, the end of the discussion. we don't just clear the decks and stop. some of the revisions in the code obviously serve very
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important objections and that's why they're there in the first place. and some we will need to keep, clearly. why? to make sure the tax code is at least as progressive after tax reform as it is today. and i want to emphasize this approach is just a starting point. it's not a proposal. this is just a good, fair, balanced way, a good-faith way, including all members of the senate to get started, and we believe it's going to lead to a solution kind of the way that bertrand russell suggested -- you've got to state the problem in a way it's going to lead to a solution. we think this is a good way to get to that solution. mr. hatch: mr. president, indeed, we both believe that some existing tax expenditures should be preserved in some form. but the tax code is also littered with preferences for special interests. to make sure that we clear out all the unproductive provisions and simplify the tax code, we plan to -- we plan to operate
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from an assumption that all special provisions are out unless there is clear evidence that they, number one, help grow the economy; number two, help make the tax code fairer, or; number three, effective promote other important policy objectives. mr. baucus: now that we have a blank slate, we're asking all senators -- that's all senators, senators on the committee, senators off the committee -- to submit detailed legislative proposals. that is, what they think -- or that is tax expenditures which they think -- that is tax expenditures, you know, the credits, deductions, exclusions -- which they think should be added back, that meet the test for growth and for jobs as well as any other provisions that senators might have in mind that they think should be added or any repeals that they think make sense or other reforms that they think make sense. in order to help guide our colleagues' submissions, we have at least some rough estimates that the joint committee on
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taxation and our staff's been working on. these estimates show how much the rates would rise, for example, if we had back-tax expenditures and keep the current level of progressiveity compared to a blank slate. we put this out today, why? because we wanted everybody to know there's a tradeoff involved. that is, when you keep tax expenditures, there's going to be an increase in rates, certainly compared with what otherwise we start with. and the more tax expenditures there are, the less revenue there is for a rate reduction and deficit reduction and the more complicated our tax code will end up being. mr. hatch: we're giving senators one month to send us their submissions. we will give preference to bipartisan proposals. this input will make up the foundation of the committee's tax reform proposal. we want to ensure that the bipartisan bill we introduce has broad input and buy-in from across the senate. we can't let comprehensive tax reform get bogged down in politics.
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only a bipartisan bill can become law. mr. baucus: we also need to remember, this is not just about tax expenditures. there's much more to it than just confining our discussion to tax expenditures, because as its core, tax reform means making the tax code more fair, easier to deal with for families across our country. and there are a lot of loopholes, on the other hand, in the code that we should get rid of. people can avoid -- people who can afford fancy tax advisors shouldn't be able to take advantage of loopholes that regular americans don't have available to them. and as chairman and ranking member of the committee, we are determined to complete tax reform this congress. we cannot afford to be complacent. improving the tax code provides a great opportunity to spark economic growth, to really create jobs and make united states businesses more competitive. i might add at this point, mr. president, other countries are modernizing their code and
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we're going to be left in the dust if we don't modernize ours. so we need to hear from our colleagues as to what provisions they think can help us reach those goals. i have a great partner in this mission, my good friend, senator hatch, and i'll keep communicating and working with the administration and the senate leadership to move the ball forward. because working together, we can get this done. i believe strongly that nothing of consequence ever happens around here when one person tries to accomplish something alone on his behalf or her behalf. rather, matters of consequence are accomplished when people work together, and we clearly want the matter of consequence to pass here and we will do so by working together. mr. hatch: mr. president, it is a privilege to work with senator baucus, our chairman, on improving the tax code, on updating it for the 21st century. this provides a great opportunity to give families certainty, spark economic growth, create jobs, and make the united states businesses more competitive.
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it -- if it's done right, it can provide -- it can really provide america with a real shot in the arm. my friend from montana began this discussion with a quote and i feel it only appropriate to conclude with one as well. abraham lincoln said -- quote -- "determine the thing that can and shall be done and then we shall find the way." we are determined to -- to craft a fairer and simpler tax code. working together, i think we can find a way. and i want to compliment the distinguished senator from montana for the work he's already done, for the work the committee's already done, the hearings we've held, the meetings we've held on these options papers, and for his general zeal in leading the charge here on this -- on this question of shall we or shall we not reform our tax code. if you look at that stack of tax
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code books that stood this high, you realize that there's -- it's time to simplify that -- that doggone mess. and i think we can do it but it's going to take a bipartisan effort. it's going to take all of us working closely. it's going to take everybody on the finance committee doing the things it really takes to bring tax reform alive. in 1986, it took three years to get the 1986 bill done. i don't think we have three years. i think we're going to have to do it now or it won't be done. so i -- i just want to personally express my admiration and friendship for the distinguished senator from montana. i intend to help him every step of the way. and i believe we have a tremendous contingent of senators on the finance committee as good as any time that committee has been staffed in the history of the finance committee. the senators we have there are
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all solid, they're all fully embracing this in the sense of trying to come up with the very best reform we can. and i have to say, we have i think the best staff that committee's ever had as well, and that's saying something, because it's always had great staff. the finance committee has always been one of the greatest committees in -- in the congre congress, as it should be, and i have to say under the leadership of the distinguished senator from montana, it's no exception this time. we have great people on the staff and we intend to see if we can get this done. i want to thank my colleague for his great work in this area. mr. baucus: thank you, senator. it's mutual. i yield the floor.
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a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from new hampshire. mrs. shaheen: mr. president, is the senate in a quorum call? the presiding officer: it is not. mrs. shaheen: thank you. i rise, mr. president, to congratulate all of those people who worked so hard on immigration reform. i think it was a tremendous success for the senate to address an issue that has long been outstanding in this country, and to come to a resolution that got such strong
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bipartisan support. but despite that success, one of the things that we were not able to do is to address what's going to happen with student loans, which without any action by congress, we know that subsidized direct student loans will increase on july 1 from 3.4% to 6.8%. there are a number of proposals currently on the table, and there are negotiations underway and i think all of that is positive. but as we think about the challenge that our young people face, it's important that we think about getting rid of obstacles that prevent them from going on to college, from getting degrees in higher
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education. last month i had the privilege to speak at the commencement ceremony at king state college, one of new hampshire's great public colleges. the students were great celebrating their graduation, they were eager to put their education to work and find meaningful employment, their optimism, their sense of hope, and their enthusiasm to make a difference was palpable. and as i looked out across the audience that afternoon, i knew that a number of those students, probably up to 66%, according to national statistics, had borrowed money to get their degree. these students and their families viewed higher education as so important that they were willing to take on significant loans to get that degree. and it made sense for these students, particularly since recent studies have shown that higher education is one of the key factors driving upward
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mobility in the united states. in fact, earlier this year pew foundation's economic mobility project showed that even during the most recent economic downturn, a four-year college degree provided protection in the labor market for recent college graduates. so making college affordable for our students is essential to growing this country's economy, it's essential to creating jobs, it's essential to protecting the middle class, and it's essential to providing those future opportunities for our young people. now, on the one hand, we know that we've got to make higher education more affordable and available to our young people. and yet, on the other hand, over the last 30 years tuition and fees have increased 167% at private four-year colleges and 257% at public four-year colleges.
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now, if we adjust that for inflation, that means that tuition has increased faster than the cost of gasoline, health care, and other consumer items. so as we're thinking about how to deal with these student loan interest rates, it's important that we provide some protection for our students, because if we don't, we're going to price middle-class families out of a higher education. in my state of new hampshire, the student loan debate is especially critical because last year, and for several years before that, new hampshire has had the highest average student loan college debt in the country at a little over $31,000. per student. not only do we have the highest average loan debt, we also have the second highest percentage of students with debt in the
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country. so as i listen to these young people, i know that the high cost of student loans is financially crippling, and we've heard from some of those students who talk about the challenge that they face as the result of the cost of their student loans. julianne from gilmanton wrote that her education is crushing her. she earned is master's degree and she works for a new hampshire state agency and she is an adjunct faculty member at two local colleges. to finance her education, one that she thought and people told her would guarantee her a job after graduation, julianne took out more than $220,000 in loans. last year alone, she paid over $13,000 in those student loans, and she can't buy a house, she can't secure credit, even though she makes a respectable
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income, she says she can't really pursue being an active member of the community because she's got those student loans hanging over her head. lauren bowden is another young person we heard from. she graduated from west high school in manchester a couple of years ago and went on to get an undergraduate degree in biology. she is getting her degree in the stem subjects, one of the things that's so important to the future of this country, but when she graduated, she looked at her job options and after considering some entry-level jobs that paid $25,000 to $30,000, she decided she needed to go on and get a master's degree, that that was going to provide her better opportunities. well, she's now 22, she's enrolled in a master's of biology program, and she's accumulated already over $100,000 in loans. she's concerned about struggling
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to find a job, and she writes "i'm not alone. this is an entire generation of my peers in this country who did the same. we followed our dreams, we earned our degrees because this is america, and you can be what you want to be as long as you work hard. we have worked so hard, we will keep working hard, but will it be enough? what will it be like for our kids after we start families and our kids want to go to college with even higher tuition and borrowing rates ""recently i had a chance to speak with bar a ruth lane, the director at granite state college, one of our public colleges in new hampshire. barbara and her colleagues helped students access $9 million in federal loans last year, significant help for students who want to get that
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advanced degree and need financial help to do that. but barbara's quick to point out that the number of students helped and the amount of financial aid they've received doesn't really illustrate the human cost that those loans take on a student. to illustrate the point, she told me the story of a student who lives in the north country of new hampshire. that student's 35 and has two young children. she struggles to make ends meet. she gets child support sometimes, and she supplements that income with food stamps, she visits the local food pantry, her children get clothing from the local church. in the winter she gets some fuel assistance, not enough because we've had to cut the fuel assistance program, so she borrows money from her family to use a kerosene heater on cold nights to heat her home. but this student understands
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that education is her only way out, the only way she can break the cycle of poverty. so she met with counselors at the granite state college, she developed an educational plan, and though she's being careful in borrowing, the debt that she's going to graduate with is more than she has earned ever in her working years in one year. and while her education is going to prepare her for the job market, she knows the payoff isn't immediate, that she's going to continue to struggle to make the payments on those student loans and to care for her family. and with a budget like she's dealing with, any additional cost of those student loans is going to impact this woman and her family. like so many of us here, i've been moved by these students who have worked so hard to achieve their education goals and the jobs of their dreams because
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they recognize that education is an investment, that higher education is a path to middle-class success, to economic opportunity. i think that higher education is one of the best investments we can make in our country. it's important not just to those young people who are getting their degrees to give them the jobs that are -- that make them prosperous in the future that they're going to be able to support families on, but it's critical for america to compete in the global economy that we're in. we should be doing everything we can to make america a magnet for jobs, to ensure our workers have the skills they need to compete and to help americans get ahead. and we've got to do everything we can to make sure that we keep higher education affordable for our young people. that we don't address those costs and try and balance the costs of higher education on the backs of our students.
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so i am hopeful that we will continue to work on how we address the student loan interest rate, that we'll be able to come to some agreement in a way that's not going to cost our young people their futures, that's not going to cost america its future, that's not going to price families out of the cost of higher education. thank you very much, mr. president. i yield the floor. a senator: i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from colorado. mr. bennet: thank you, mr. president. i'd ask the quorum call be
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vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. bennet: thank you, mr. president. i first want to say to you how wonderful it's been to serve with you in the united states senate and as you take your leave to go back to the real world in massachusetts, we all wish you well and we thank you for everything that you've done when you've been here, especially the good cheer that you brought to our caucus. so thank you very much. and in the vein of thank yous i wanted to come down after this historic day passing this historic bill to say some thank yous. i already thanked my colleagues in the gang of eight, and other senators that worked so hard on this bill, so there will be time to do that on another occasion. but sometimes people ask -- have asked me during the course of my checkered career how did you get to do this and why did they let you do this and how did somebody with no apparent skill or aptitude for public
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education, for example, get to run the denver public schools, one of the most cherished things i've ever done? and my answer has always been the same. which is the key is to find a bunch of people that are better at doing their job and you would ever be at doing their job, and assemble them and get them organized around a project or a challenge or an obstacle and let them do their thing. the presiding officer spoke eloquently about this yesterday when he thanked his personal staff and the senate staff on his way back to massachusetts. and i have a list that i will submit for the record. i'd ask the presiding officer whether i could submit this for the record. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. bennet: of all the staff in the senators' offices that worked on this bill. and i'll take time tonight to just mention a few names. firstful all, people on my staff including rachel velazquez, stephanie artun who
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did amazing work, both over many, many months on this bill, not just here but also as we worked on the colorado compact in the state of colorado that was what really enabled us to be part of this conversation. i have thought throughout this process how important the work was that we did in colorado in preparation for this moment, to get to this moment. it simply would have been impossible to succeed at producing what we call the colorado compact, six principles that were so bipartisan that the first, when we had the press conference, the person that came to read the first of these principles was actually my republican opponent in the 2010 senate race, ken buck. i want to thank him for that and the others that were part of the compact, especially my deputy chief of staff, sarah hughes,
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who did just an amazing job pulling everybody together. she's been with me longer than anybody on my staff. nothing i could have accomplished in the jobs that i have had before and certainly not in this instance could i have done without sarah hughes. the same goes for john davidson who is my chief of staff and who is, i think, a model for what a chief of staff in the united states senate should be or anywhere else, for that matter. but particularly here where the pressures can be so extraordinary. his ability to attract an incredibly talented team of people to work on all kinds of issues from immigration to health care to education, incredibly important constituent service that we do both here and in colorado, simply none of it would have happened if somehow i wouldn't have been happy enough to hire jonathan davidson who has been around here for a very long time, having been among
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other things paul sarbanes chief of staff when he was chair of the banking committee. by my side before i came in the senate on this issue has been sergio gonzalez who has worked tirelessly, doesn't even capture, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week it's felt like. he certainly looks that way. he won't appreciate my saying that but it's true. those who know sergio will know what i'm talking about. but he's done an amazing job with a sense of humor and i think has served not just me during this but the entire gang of eight and we will be forever grateful. there were many times during this process when i thought about sergio's grandfather and grandmother, his grandfather corkie gonzalez who played such an important role in colorado's history and the history of the west for whom a library was just named last week and what he
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would think about knowing that we live in a country where his grandson has helped to shepherd across the line the most important immigration reform in this country's history. so i thank sergio gonzalez for his leadership as well. none of this would have been possible without chuck schumer. i talked about that earlier. none of that would have been possible without his capable staff: leon fresco, stephanie martz, all of whom did an extraordinary job of keeping us on job and keeping chuck on track, and i deeply appreciate that. the others i wanted to mention while on the floor today are the staffs of the people we negotiated the agriculture provisions of this bill: dianne feinstein did a great job leading that effort. kreupl tom -- chris thompson, neil quin t*eer. from warn -- from senator
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hatch's office, matt hanson did a great job. i want to thank senator rubio's staff. this is the first time we ever had an immigration bill, madam president, where the agriculture provisions in the bill are endorsed by both the growers and the farm workers union. that has never happened before. i want to thank all of them for doing that. we would not have accomplished that without some very, very late-night meetings. enrique gonzalez was always there and john bosaleesy. he will never forgive me for that and enriqi will never let me forget it. i would thraoeubg to thank the leader's staff, and the judiciary committee staff.
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i've submitted names for the record. there are names not mentioned on the floor of the senate and i want to read these names. these are the schedulers for the eight senators that work on this bill so hard for so many months. i knew -- the day i knew we were actually going to get this done was the day john mccain said in his office some months ago, he said unless we begin to meet three times a week, we're never going to get that done. as the president knows, that is an enormous commitment of time to do it three times a week. and we did it week in and week out. sometimes we weren't even in washington, back home on the telephone, but we carved out the time to do it. and that could not have happened without the schedulers in our office. from my perspective, certainly not without christian mollett, my extraordinary securely. i told her when -- i don't know if i was interviewing her or she was interviewing me, probably a
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little bit of both. what i said to her was the securely is the heart of the operation. if the schedule doesn't work, the wheels come off and nothing else works. christen mollett has done an extraordinary job. in no particular order let me say thank you to alice james with senator graham. meggen runyon, claire russell with senator durbin. jessica bonfiglio in senator rubio's office and ellen cayhill in senator mccain's office. we could not have done it without them. the story i told people when i first came here, when i was a superintendent working in business, not in politics -- i had never run for office before when i took this job -- the story i told earlier that the key is finding people a lot better doing your job than you would ever be doing their job.
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that has never been more true than in the united states senate where the quality of the work we do depends entirely on the quality of the staff we have. i want to say thank you to all the senate staff for your efforts. with that, madam president, i will yield the floor. i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:
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quorum call:
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mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent the call of the quorum be terminated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent, at a time to be determined by necessity consultation with senator mcconnell, the senate proceed to executive session to consider calendar number 97, that there be one hour for debate equally divided in the usual form. following the use or yielding back of that time, the senate proceed to vote with no intervening action or debate on the nomination, the motion to
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reconsider be considered made and laid on the table with no intervening action or debate, that no further motions be in order, that any related statements be printed in the record approximate and that president obama be immediately notified of the senate's action and the senate then resume legislative session. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent that on monday, july 8, of this year at 5:00 p.m., the senate proceed to consider calendar number 90, which is a nomination, that there be 30 minutes for debate equally divided in the usual form. that upon the use or yielding back of that time, the senate proceed to vote with no intervening action or debate on the nomination, the motion to very are be considered made and laid on the table with no intervening action or debate and that no further motions be in order, that any related statements be printed in the record,&that the president be immediately -- record, and that the president be immediately notified of the senate's action. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid reid: reid: i ask unans
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consent, at a time to be determined by me and senator mcconnell, the senate proceed to executive session to consider calendar number 186, that the -- there be one hour for debate equally divided in the usual form, that following the use or yielding back of that time, the senate proceed to vote with no intervening action or debate on the nomination, the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate, no further motions be in order, any related statements be printed in the record and president obama be immediately notified of the senate's action and the senate resume lenl laifb legislative session. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to calendar 146, 145, 177, 181, 18, 181, 190, 196, 197, 198 and all nominations on the secretary's desk in the air force, army, coast guard and navy. that the nominations be confirmed en bloc, the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid on the table with no intervening action or debate, that no further motions be in order to any of the nominations,
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that any related statements be printed in the record and that president obama be immediately notified of the senate's action. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: mr. reid: i ask consent that we now ask -- i ask that the commerce committee be discharged from further consideration of presidential nomination 121. presidential nomination 500, that the nominations be confirmed, the motions to reconsider -- there's two separate ones, madam president -- that the nominations be confirmed, the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid on the table, there be no intervening action or debate, no further motions be in order to the nomination, any related statement be printed in the record and the president be immediately notified of the senate's expaks th action and te resume legislative session. the presiding officer: without
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objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent the senate consider calendar number -- now move to consider calendar number 187, that the senate proceed to vote with no intervening action or debate, the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid on the table, there be no intervening action -- mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent, madam president, that the senate proceed now to executive session to consider calendar number 187, that the senate proceed to vote with no intervening action or debate, that the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid on the table with no intervening action or debate, that no further motions be in order to the nomination, any statements related to the nomination be printed in the record, the president be immediately notified of the senate's action and the senate then resume legislative session. the presiding officer: without objection. the clerk will report the nominations.
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the clerk: nomination, howard a. shalenans caki to be administrar at the office of regulation and add minimum stray activadminist. the presiding officer: all those in favor say aye. all those opposed say no. the ayes appear to have it. the ayes do have it. the nomination is confirmed. mr. reid: i now ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to -- the presiding officer: under the previous order, it is senate will resume legislative session. mr. reid: so sorry. i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to calendar number 90, h.r. 1151. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: calendar number 90, h.r. 1151, an act to direct the
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secretary of state to develop a strategy to obtain observer status for taiwan at the try triennal civil aviation assembly and for other purposes. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate will proceed to the measure. mr. reid: i ask the bill be read a third time and passed, the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid on the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent the senate proceed to h.r. 2383. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: h.r. 2383, an act to designate the new interstate route 70 bridge over the mississippi river connecting st. louis, missouri, and southwestern illinois as the stan musual veterans memorial bridge. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate will proceed to the measure. the clerk: i ask, madam president, the bill be read a third time -- three times and passed, the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid on the table, there be
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no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i now ask unanimous consent the banking, housing and urban affairs committee be discharged from further consideration of h.r. 324 and that we now proceed to that matter. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: h.r. 324, an act to grant the congressional gold medal collectively to the first special service force in recognition of its superior service during world war ii. the presiding officer: without objection, the committee is discharged and the senate will proceed to the measure. the clerk: i ask consent the bill be read a third time, passed, the motion to reconsider be laid on the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i now ask consent that we proceed to s. res. 192. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 192, commemorating the 150th anniversary of the battle of gettysburg and the significance of this battle in the history of the united states. the presiding officer: without
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objection, the senate will proceed to the measure. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to, the potiothe motion to reconsidd upon the table with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without t objection. the clerk: providing for a conditional adjournment or recess of the senate and an adjournment of the house of representatives. the presiding officer: without objection, the senate will proceed to the measure. the clerk: i ask unanimous consent the concurrent resolution be agreed to, the motion to reconsider be laid on the table, there be no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent that s. 1238 and 1241, both of which were introduced earlier today, be considered read twice and placed on the calendar. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent that s. 744, as amended and passed by the senate, be printed. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent that on friday, june 28 through monday, july 8, the majority leader and senators mikulski and reed be authorized
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to sign duly enrolled bills or resolutions. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent that notwithstanding the upcoming recess or adjournment of the senate, the president of the senate, the president pro tempore and the majority and minority leaders be authorized to make appointments to commissions, committees, boards, conferences, or interparliamentary conferences authorized by law, by concurrent action of the two houses or by order of the senate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today, it adjourn and convene for pro forma sessions only with no business on the following dates and times: july 28 at 12:15 p.m., tuesday, july 2 at 10:15 a.m., friday, july 5, at 12:00 p.m. let's start those over again. first, july -- i'm sorry, so sorry. friday, june 28, 12:15 p.m. tuesday, july 2 at 10:15 a.m.
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and friday, july 5, at 12:00 p.m. and that the senate adjourn on friday, july 5, until 2:00 p.m. on monday, july 8, 2013. unless the senate receives a message from the house that it has adopted s. con. res. 19, the adjournment resolution. and if the senate receives such message, the senate adjourn until 2:00 p.m. on monday, july 8 that. on monday following the prayer and pledge, the morning hour be deemed expired, the journal of proceedings be approved to date, and the time for the two leaders be reserved for their use later in the day and that follow any leader remarks, the senate be in a period of morning business until 5:00 p.m. with senators permitted to speak for up to ten minutes each. following morning business, the senate proceed to executive session under the previous order. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reid: madam president, i appreciate your patience and all the staff. i would have come here sooner had i been able to but they were still trying to work on this material so that we could close for the work period we're going
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to have at home. so the next roll call vote will be at 5:30 p.m. on monday, july 8. and if there's no further business to come before the senate, i ask that it adjourn under the previous order. the presiding officer: the senate stands adjourned until 12:15 p.m. tomorrow, unless the senate receives a message from the house that it has agreed to s. con. res. 19, in which case the senate stands adjourned until 2:00 p.m. on monday, july until 2:00 p.m. on monday, july
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>> my father had a rough childhood himself mother died four days shy his ninth birthday. a small catering company collapsed and he was forced to leave school and go to work. he would work virtually every day for the rest of his life. my mother's father was disabled by polio as a child and struggled to provide for his seven daughter. my parents met at a small store. he actually lived and slept in the storage room of the store as the security guard. and they had dreams. my mother wanted to be an actress.
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and my father tried hard to get ahead. in fact, after work, he would take correspondence courses to be a tv and radio repairman but it was hard because he barely knew how to read. they did everything they could to make a better life. but living in an increasingly unstable country, with limited education and no connections, they just couldn't. so they saved as much as they could, and on may 27, 1956, they beard an airplane to miami. they came to america in search of a better life. now, like most recent arrivals, life in america was not easy, either. my father had someone actually phonetically write on a small piece of paper the words, i am looking for work. he memorized those words. those were the first words he learned to speak in english. he took day jobs wherever he could fine them. they both went to work at a factory building aluminum
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chairs. my dad eventually became a bartender. he tried to open up some businesses, and when they didn't work they tried los angeles, las vegas. but that also didn't work, and so he found himself back on miami beach behind a bar. the truth is they consider discouraged and homesick for cuba. in the early days of castro's rule they entertained going back permanently. of course, communism took road and that became impossible, too. i'm sure on the worst days they wondered if it would ever get better, and then the miracle we know as america began to change their lives. by 1967 they had saved enough money to buy a house. it was within walking distance of the orange bowl, where on sundays they used to make extra money by letting people park on their lawn. my older sister was in ballet mitchell brother the star quarterback at miami high. but not just their lives
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changed. also their hearts. they still spoke spanish at home, and they kept all the customs from cuba. but with each passing year, this country became their own. my mother recalls how on the terrible november day in 1963, she went at the news that her president has been slain. she remembers the magical night in 1969, when an american walked on the moon, and she realized that now, nothing was impossible. you see, well before they if became citizen, in their hearts, they had already become americans. it reminds us sometimes that we focus so much on hour immigrants can change america that we forget that america has always changed immigrants even more. this is not just my story. this is our story.
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it reminds us of the word etched on the marshle on the roster of the senate. e -- pluribis unim. we have a right to control who comes into our country, but unlike other countries, we are not afraid of people coming in here from other places. instead, inspired by our judeo-christian principles, we have seen the stranger and invited them in. and our nation has been blessed for it. in ways that remind us of the ancient words, god divided the sea and led them through and made the waters stand up like a wall. by gey day he led them with a cloud. by night with a light of fire. he split the rocks in the desert. he gave them plentiful to deep. he made streams flow up and waters run down like rivers, and
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he command the cloud above and opened the gates of heaven. he rained down manna for the food and gave them bread from heaven. our history is filled with dramatic evidence that god's hand is upon our land, and few among us would dispute that we, americans, are a blessed people. and the harbor of our most famous city, there's a statue of a woman holding a lamp. tea base of the statue there's a poem that reads: keep ancient lands your story yesterday pomp. give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free. the retched refuge of your teaming shore, send to me. i miss my lamp beside the golden -- i lift my lamp beside the golden down. for over two years they have come in search of liberty and
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freedom for sure, but often, just in search of a job to feed their kids and a chance at a better life. from ireland and poland, germany and france, from mexico and cuba, they have come. they have come because in the land of their birth, their dreams were bigger than their opportunities. here they brought the language and the customs, their religions and music, and somehow, they've made them ours as well. from a collection of people from everywhere, we became one people. most exceptional nation in all of human history. and even with all our challenges, we remain that shining city on a hill. we are still the hope of the world. go to our factories and our fields. go to the kitchens and
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construction sites. go to the cafeterias in this very capitol, and there you will find that the miracle of america is still alive. for here in america, those who once had no hope will give their kids the chance at a life they always wanted for themselves. here, in america, generations of up fulfilled dreams will finally come to pass. and that's why i support this reform. not just because i believe in immigrants. but because i believe in america even more. i yield the floor. >> madam president, i appreciate the excellent remarks from the heart of my good friend, marco rubio. he is a great addition to the senate. and i would say the heart of america is good. the heart of this country is good. for 30 years they've been
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pleading with congress to keep a generous immigration policy afoot in america, but at the same time they've been pleading with us to end the illegality, and that has continued for years now. it just has. and the people have pleaded with us to do something about it. and year after year after year, congress has refused. the president has refused. and that is why we now have 11 million people in the country illegally. and i think that the heart of america is good and they're willing to deal compassion -- compassionately. but they have said they want to see this congress do what members of congress have repeatedly promised and never delivered on. creating lawful systems, a system we can be proud of, a system that serves the national
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interest. ... >> i ask that they be allowed to participate but they were rebuffed. let's hear what they say
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about the bill. the bill that in committee was as tough as nails and the tv ad writing since the top of the bill in history history, maybe the history of the world. if that is correct, i have to ask, i think not. that is a joint statement issued to date by the council representing immigration and customs enforcement officers, and the united states citizenship in service officers as a joint statement to represent the tens of thousands of officers. they say this'' now it should we listen to what they say? and "the communicators" adjudication officers pleaded with lawmakers not to adopt this bill that the
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corker hoven proposal will make americans less safe to ensure more illegal immigration a specially with the visa overstay in the future and provides legalization for thousands of dangerous criminals by making it more difficult for our officers to identify public safety and national security threads. guided from the beginning from anti-lock, and state enforcement specialist and to have the desire and the effect of these words to block immigration enforcement. this is the anti-public safety bill in the anti-law enforcement bill and we propose for final cloture vote on thursday and to oppose the bill which we will be voting on soon. " end quote. then they say this'' and we call on all americans to pick up the phone and call
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members of congress''. so who do we trust if we have a bill that will work? i guess the senators who work hard on the front lines doing the work for the people we paid we try to do the work every day to put their lives at risk. something else i would like to talk about today, to touch on, it is one of the least discussed parts of the conversation we have others from legislation but this could be the most important. i know our friends in the media certainly have given coverage to it but i hope they think about it more riches the future flow of immigration for america or the illegal immigration that groth flows through the illegal flow of the future.
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the cbo tells us a larger increase of most of the bill's legal workers will push down wages and increase unemployment. pushed down wages and increase unemployment. that needs to be talked about. hundreds of people are hurting and there was an article recently from sydney york times that 700 people camp out for five days to get a few jobs as the elevator repair man. they sat in the rain and waited in line hoping to get one of those jobs. there was an article in philadelphia where individuals who had convictions who wanted work them they set up an opportunity for them and they expected 1,000 but
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2,000 showed up and they interviewed a number of them and the stories are heartbreaking. don't we need to consider the impact the policies could have on working americans? it is a sensitive topic but here is what david cameron cameron, the prime minister of the u.k. said recently'' there are those who say you cannot have a sensible debate because it somehow wrong to express concerns about immigration. i think this is nonsense. it needs to be approached in a sensitive and rational manner but i have always understood the concerns, a genuine concerns of hard-working people including many from the of might bring communities and they worry about the pressure of the change from our communities and of
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course, the concern deeply felt that some people could come and take advantage of our generosity without making a proper contribution to the country. mr. cameron goes on to say it is our failure in the past to perform welfare that we left too many of our young people in the system where they didn't have proper skills, didn't have proper incentives to work, and instead we have large a reserve people coming from overseas to fill vacancies in our e economy. put simply, our job is to educate and train our youth not to rely on immigration but the fill the gaps''. does that resonate with the people today? have we thought through this as to how we should handle these matters?
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liggett this zone situation 25 million americans are unable to find full-time work. when net of three without a high-school diploma are unemployed. 47 million americans are on food stamps. and the lowest since the 1970's the percentage of america actually working is lower and falling since the 1970's but it goes back when they were just beginning to enter the workforce. it appears we're in an era that economists have been talking about a new normal wear we see growth of the economy's bid we would release the and and businesses are looking to contain the growth and it
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has been the result. our own cbo could i be notified with 20 minutes. >> the senator would be notified. >> drones cbo gives the economic projection and connected to immigration but they have the 10 year window through the year 2023 we would only create 75,000 jobs. some would say we will bring in workers to create jobs but we will talk about what the economist early say about that. but what does this legislation to? what about these unemployed
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americans? they have four times more and not just seasonal workers but years at a time with their families but specifically to take a job four times more been in the 2007 bill that failed. end of the next decade and there is also the legalization of process. experts have come to the same conclusion. but normally we would give 10 million people legal status but to this day legislation has refused to
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tell us how any can come in to the country. but we do know the plan does not merit based but lower skilled in this would be a hammer of working-class americans. they had hearings on this. that we have a shortage of lower skilled workers we have a glut of lower skilled workers and that is a'' so let's compare this situation with legislation introduced in 2007 today 5 million more americans are unemployed, 20 million more americans are on food stamps and unemployment with teenagers 54% higher than 2007.
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meanwhile begin household income, i get this. median household income is eight point* 9% lower than 1999. that is huge. as an immigrant whose studies immigration has set up a large part of that decline is driven by the large immigration flow that comes into our country. this would increase dramatically. we are not going to stop immigration. we will maintain the flow but the people need to know this bill increases dramatically. the us -- cbo did a report. the legal immigration surge will reduce average wages for a decade. reduce average wages for a
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decade. the on cbo said that and put a chart in the report. i had an earlier. and wages will remain lower for many years after that as of the bill had never passed. what about unemployment? it will increase according to the cbo. per capita it will be lower the next quarter of a century. yes you will have the increase of gdp because of a large new group of people, but that increase does not occur. it reduces the per-capita cost. these are conservative efforts and the report suggests the situation would be worse than this but what
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about the group's in the agriculture world, and meatpacking world, other business? to the american citizen who work hard and paid taxes and fight our wars and who is speaking up so the time is long past and for national discussion of illegal immigration, we believe that no one proposes ending immigration. it is a deep part of our nation that we not only have a right but a duty to establish a responsible flow that promotes assimilation and self-sufficiency and helps identify and the last thing we want you do to invite people to work to
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find out there's no jobs here or does place an order to get a job does not make sense. this is not the kind of discussion that we need but the objective is a detriment to working americans. we need a policy that promotes the interests to consider of high unemployment not those that reject ags -- ideas and that could hurt to create permanent middle-class in america. we have to do it right. the legislation before us is a dramatic step by urge my colleagues to work on a positive reform plan that
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serves the national interest of all americans sadly this legislation does prevent the interest of those who wrote it in many burberry special at the expense of the public. the vote we're about to have with the open and fair process with all of the promises of this bill that it will end the lawlessness in the future for ever. it just will not happen. our offices have told them this. this legislation is a misty first. it plainly lacks the of mechanism that is necessary to create a law enforcement system that will work. there is a lack of commitment to that. you can see it throughout
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the bill is not written by people who are out there every day you know, the problem with the enforcement and if there were they would fix these problems throughout the bill. his there has been recent amendment for the border. so what about the rest of the bill? the e-verify a system was terribly flawed, delayed, it could be put to work right now. we don't need to wait five years. that is how long it would be delayed. of less you are not interested to get started to make sure that half of the people are legalized, others can come in to take the job the entry/exit visa system in this bill, s-744 the
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1,000 page bill is weaker than current law and current law says you must have the entry/exit system with sea comair and land this bill says only electronic system with air and sea to make the system in complete unable to identify who stays and who has returned home on time. and enforcement is much weaker and as i have read this morning pleading with us not to pass a bill because it will hurt him for smith and weaken national security. the method of processing those given legal status will not work. the citizenship and immigration service is one of the big objectors to the bill and they say no way they can accomplish what will be asked of them if it would pass.
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they sail these to lawlessness in they cannot identify dangerous people who should not be in the country. i think the chair. i will be wrapping up. or to pay for the cost of this amnesty but as the sponsors promise is a huge budget clustered the provision that we are supposed to insure those who are given legal status did that have legalized or subsidized health care now have a incentive for businesses not to hire american workers because they will have to pay obamacare with those workers to give away the status with a multi thousand dollars in advantages to hire them over
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american workers. let's continue to work through these problems together. i do feel that what our bill sponsors is correct to say we need to fix the broken system that will respond to the pleas of the american people and serve our national interest and we can take pride. how can we vote for a bill that the art -- their own cbo will reduce average wages in america for 12 years? we're in this group of american workers, thousands or millions of immigrant workers, and millions of minorities with low wages and this legislation at the time they're hurting very badly with reduced average wages over 12 years will
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increase unemployment and reduce per-capita gdp for over 25 years? this is policy? we have to ask serious questions with long-term falling wages and welfare and disability and dependency. it is not a healthy trend in america. we have to ask these questions the real focus as prime minister cameron has said we work hard to train our people are unemployed people with jobs that pay decent wages and health care and a retirement plan. this legislation will not end the lawlessness as we have been repeatedly told. it will not do so it will not give legality or amnesty virtually immediately unpromising enforcement in
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the future but it will not happen. it will not happen now. i believe in order to be a federal prosecutor i know their difficulties but this is a letter written today. from a true patriot who has worked so hard to do this and said, the weather problems with the bill is the failure to enforce the nation's immigration laws on the interior of the united states. not just a border issue. it will not end as a result of border security and it must be resolved to increase the interior enforcement. 40 percent of americans did
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not cross the border into the gully with a visa and did not leave when it expired. 40,000 border patrol agents provided in your legislation will never come in contact with these people. do you hear that colleagues? these border patrol agents will never come in contact with the people in the interior who came on a visa and chose not to return. bit goes on to say a system like e-verify and biometric entry/exit still missing identify millions of illegal immigrants and status violators but i saw officers will not locate or apprehend them. rendering the system useless a majority of the national's identified will remain in the united states.
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500,000 fugitives are currently in the united states. 2 million criminal aliens at large. 900,000 criminal aliens are arrested by local police each year. then they go on to note there only 5,000 ice officers in america but with state and local government they try to help those eyes officers get their job done. and then the joint statement today from the uscis option that the adjudications have pleaded with congress not to adopt this bill but work on real effective reform for the american people and they say this bill is''
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anti-public safety bill and the anti-law enforcement bill and we urge all lawmakers to oppose the final cloture vote and oppose the bill. this legislation will not and a lot and i wish it were different but that is a fact. it does not creative merit based future flow as has been promised it has been a very difficult position. i feel that there is no choice for us today. let's go on the legislation. it will not and put the evidence we will have to continue to wrestle with this but the good news is the house initially from what i have seen with their work indicate they're getting a far more prudent approach for the first bill that they produced i tried to offer as an amendment but it did not get brought up really has the effective effort to improve and tear
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law enforcement. that is the thing we need to be doing then win the confidence of the american people then move past with a difficult time in their history and i think the chair for the time on this side.
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>> the energy environment reporter with the journal daily why did the obama is administration issued a veto threat against the offshore drilling bill? >> there is so much of the bill the house republicans put into the prior congress to open up offshore of the united states for natural gas drilling given the station does not want to open and predictably opposes the bill but the republicans keep pushing it because it is a salient message during campaign season and something they like. >> water areas that will open up? >> areas of the gulf of mexico, and the california coast in the eastern shore of the united states depending on which part
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defers but most are done by 2020. >> host: any idea of the volume or how much the oil and gas will the new fields il? >> guest: the republicans point* out it could significantly increase our material reproduce in the united states but i attended a briefing with the house majority whip mccarthy along with the sponsor hastings and they talk about how this helps with the jobs in energy security of the united states. what they don't talk about is the oil from north dakota and it is one more piece of the pie they think can help us get closer to energy independence. >> host: what are the house debate prats arguing against? >> guest: moving forward drastically would signal the environmental impact. one of the debates we have seen time and time again
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that we see democrats are miles apart from the republicans pledge energy and specifically drilling is one of the few issues the house republican excuse me they're very united. it is easy for the speaker to move the bill because he knows it will unite the conference on like immigration. >> host: it comes on the heels of president obama is major speech on tuesday on in farming and energy regulation. it headlines say they are answering obama with the drilling bill. . .
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and also many republicans in the senate. >> will the drilling bill pass in the house? >> it will definitely pass. you hear the debates on the floor about the potential job creation for more drilling, and the democrats concerned about environmental degradation of the land, once again, like most drilling bills in the house, it will be dead on arrival in the senate. i will say one portion of the bill which would increase revenue sharing for offshore states to take money the oil companies pay to federal government, so the states can have a piece of the pie. that idea has gained traction in
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the senate. >> amy harder, energy and environmental reporter. you can follow her stories at national journal.com. acting irs commissioner reported to congress on the targeting of conservative groups. it follows a review of how applications for tax-exempt status were handled. this hearing is three hours.